Profit fell sharply in the second quarter for gold and copper producer Newmont Mining Corp. (NYSE: NEM – $17.60) on lower metals prices, even as production and sales continued to increase. Overall, Newmont reported a profit of $72 million compared with $180 million last year. Excluding certain items, profit settled at $0.26 cents a share vs. $0.24 estimated by analysts, and adjusted EPS of $0.20 a year earlier. Sales rose 8% to $1.91 billion vs. Street consensus of $1.97 billion. Citing the effect of favorable oil prices and currency exchange rates as well as portfolio changes, such as its acquisition of AngloGold Ashanti Ltd.’s Cripple Creek & Victor mine, Newmont raised its production guidance. The Greenwood Village, Colo., miner raised its view for gold production for the current year, as well as for what it expects to achieve by 2017. For 2015, Newmont expects gold production to reach between 4.7 million and 5.1 million ounces. It projects copper production of 140,000 to 180,000 metric tons in 2015, up from 130,000 to 160,000 metric tons, and affirmed its previous guidance that output should then level out to between 115,000 and 135,000 metric tons in 2016 and 2017. Management has streamlined its operations and initiated a cost-saving plan which, with the ramp-up of a new mine in Africa and a recovery in Nevada, should help stabilize group performance, especially as gold price headwinds begin to subside. The most recent move is the sale of the Waihi mine in New Zealand for $110 million. Meanwhile, the Turf Vent Shaft, Merian, and Long Canyon projects are moving forward and should be positive for gold production over the next two to three years. A small (less than 5%) allocation in an aggressive portfolio can be maintained for now.